I don't think this is an initiative of the UK government and more likely just them coming into line with official EU policy. UK government agencies have a long history of squandering vast sums of money on hiring private contractors with dodgy histories to set up national databases. Many have run many times over their original budgets, failed to deliver a service that is fit for purpose, and some have been cancelled. http://www.private-eye.co.uk/ does a good job of keeping up with what's going on in UK govt. IT procurement and curruption.
Weren't Microsoft behind pushing training from MS Office into schools instead of proper IT skills in the first place?